Loving Radio (and its Portability)!

Part 1 of NextRadio’s “Loving Radio” Insights Series

So many of us have such a passion for radio—the music, the personalities, and its effectiveness in reaching audiences both national and local. At NextRadio, we are building the next generation of radio through progressing the medium in-step with our listeners and advertisers. We’re taking an insights-centric approach to do this by delivering data about consumer listening and ad viewing patterns. It’s in this spirit that we partnered with Edison Research to conduct a study that asks listeners about their relationship with radio, and how it is evolving.

Our study examined about 2,094 adult smartphone users recruited through the NextRadio database who opted into receiving updates on NextRadio phone compatibility, contests, or our blog.

Out of this survey came three key themes about why radio is such a loved medium: its portability, its importance in the community, and its ability to make musical connections. In the coming days, we’ll take a deep dive into each of these topics. But today we will start with the love of radio portability.

LovING Radio Portability

Radio is the first mobile medium, available to consumers via the Walkman, the boombox, and in-vehicle listening. Respondents to a NextRadio/Edison Research survey gave a nod to their love of radio portability: 90% of audio-listening respondents said they listen to traditional FM radio in the car, and 91% of FM radio listener respondents said they stayed in the car longer to continue listening to a show or program.

While in-car listening is great, portability goes beyond the vehicle – and the key device today is the smartphone.

Many factors are already in place for this next generation of portability. First of all is streaming: 63% of respondents said they stream FM radio and 61% indicated they listen to Internet-only radio. However, to fully leverage smartphone listening, consumer concerns about data plans and battery life should be addressed.

One portability solution: The FM chip in a smartphone enables FM radio listening without streaming or using a data plan. 11.2 million smartphones with the FM radio chip activated were sold in the fourth quarter of 2015.

SOURCE: NextRadio 2016. The data is derived from a NextRadio-Edison online survey of 2,094 adult smartphone users recruited through NextRadio’s database. Survey dates: 4/22/16-5/2/16. Sample base is made up of people who opted into receiving updates on NextRadio phone compatibility, contests, or blogs.